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Happy with Melancholy

I once told a friend that she needed to get over her shit, because it only seemed that she was happy if she was miserable.  The string of bad boys that came knocking on her college door, the stuff she was putting up with from her parents, her weekly trips back to Hometown; these complaints and burdens became eventually too tiresome and I opened my mouth.  She stopped talking to me after that.

It seems however that I either learnt a great deal from this friend. Or nothing at all. For it seems the only constant of late has been Melancholy.  She herself a curious creature, not quite sad, but most certainly not content.

There can be times of pure Bliss where sheer joy of the moment means the good passes without acknowledgement, like an eagle riding high through the clouds, never concerned for a moment when it might need to come back to earth.  There moments where conceded (or conceited) Apathy looks down on the world and its minions from a lonely and angry island, unscalable to the wily-est of foes.

Unlike the others, Melancholy knows her place. From her spot, it’s as if everything can be seen, the ultimate defensive position with 360 degree views.  She can look back on the past and remember the good without blocking out the bad. This does have the disadvantage of knowing the opportunities lost, and the memory that went with them.  She is the home to which I seem to return.

Maybe I’m just happy with Melancholy too.

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Skin

He reached up with his hand. Caressing the side of her face, his fingers tucked a loose strand of hair over her ear.  The skin of her cheek against the skin of his hand.  His palm squished her cheek into an odd shape, the tear running across the heel of his palm, onto his wrist. She looked up, pleading with her eyes as his hand slid back, fingers behind her inclined neck and his thumb almost hooked over her ear.

He kissed the side of her cheek; partly air and partly skin.  She held on to that moment as long as she could. She took in his smell with the touch of his cheek without pushing herself closer, his very presence was locked with her at that moment in time.

He pulled away, his hands dropping to his sides.  He looked her in the eye and said “I’ve made a terrible mistake”. He turned, and walked out the door.

Marry Me?

Would you do it?  Would you seriously consider it?

I love you with all my heart. With every fibre of my being.  We are great together.  We don’t need to be together all the time, but I know that when we are everything is OK.  But will it be OK 2, 3,5, 10, 20 years in the future?  You know, after 10 years, just the idea of sex with another man might be the hottest thing in the world.  The sex itself might be even better than that.  Or worse, what if it was more than just the sex?

I want to have your babies. I want to bring them up and share their life with you. Can you just imagine, for a second how amazing that could be?  We would have little versions of us running around. They would remember our visits to the park and Sunday picnics and football games like I remember them with my parents.  They would love and respect us as their parents.  The people that gave them everything they know.

But what happens if that all falls apart? What happens if we just become another one of those horrible statistics that crop up in the news every time a famous couple get divorced? What if we have to subject our children to bouncing between houses and the eternal struggle of two sets of parents?

Will you be my person? And we could sit on park benches and watch sunsets.  The sick, sad romanticism of it is what makes me mention it right now. We could create a memory that no one but us would know. We could make out on top of a hill with horses grazing nearby, or try to keep warm in a bus shelter in the rain. We can run through the snow to a jacuzzi or giggle at the shadows on the ceiling.

I so want you to be the person that does that with me forever, but is it possible? Can people really do that?

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Image courtesy of bloodonthemoon5 – http://bloodonthemoon5.deviantart.com/art/Love-me-82411880

Music

Work is epically stressful right now.  Seriously, just walking into the place is almost enough to give the most pacifistic (it’s a word, I looked it up!), placatory and untroubled gentlemen a raging and pounding aneurysm.  Everyone in that place needs a 2 week break.  Just to not see each other for 14 days.  To not hear that horrible air-conditioner and stare at those blary screens for just a few days would be a god-send.

But tonight I found the cure.  I went to see a musical. Mary Poppins in all its Supercalifragic glory.  Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious was actually so fantastically choreographed that it left everyone so excited and happy that the next scene’s departure of Mary Poppins didn’t seem so awesome and sad.  I got goosebumps from Feed the Birds, as the song took on a new meaning for me; meaning that had been lost in every one of the approximate 51.5 times I have watched the Julie Andrews and Dick van Dyke movie.  I was on a  high from the tap-dancing chimney-sweeps and blown away by the colourful, creative and wonderfully technical set design.

The music relieved all sense of urgency.  It stopped me thinking about the stuff I am worried about.  For almost 3 hours I was caught up in the story of the Banks family and Cherry Tree Lane.  I forgot that I have a presentation to give tomorrow that I thought was next week.  I forgot that I haven’t been to visit my grandmother since my grandfather died and I forgot why I was worried about spending the money on going at all in the first place.

Go.  Please go.  If you don’t live in Melbourne, fly here from wherever you are in the world to go.  Best foot forward!  Spit, spot!

Make’um Go’way

I have been down in the dumps.  Below the dumps actually, I think I was dropped from a dump truck at the city tip, rolled by an earthmover, fired by an incinerator and spat out into a flock of seagulls that saw fit to pelt the remains of me with bird doo-doo.

I’ve heard about people being depressed before.  I have seen it too.  Lord knows how I watch my Dad going through it all the time.  I knew (and know now) in my mind that it really isn’t as bad as I am making it out to be, that things will change for the better and that people don’t (well, not everyone) hate me.  But over the last week, while I knew all that, I didn’t feel it.  I could not, for the life of me, convince myself that it would be alright.  I thought I was toast, that no one would ever touch me again.  That I was a horrible despicable person that didn’t deserve to have friends and that needed to hermit away because my very presence would bring others down.  Because being around other people while are having a good time is like burning your arm because you like the heat of the fire.

And there was That Thing That I Did.

Seared in my memory like a brand on the back of my brain.  White hot, every aspect of it cascading through my consciousness.  At any point in time I was immediately and acutely aware of the pain inflicted, the questions raised about my own self-awareness and deceipt.  A feeling that transcends time; as present now as it was 5 minutes, 3 days or a week ago.

Two things have happened though to start pulling me out of this spiral of pity, doubt and useless introspection.  Firstly, I caught up on some sleep.  Not just a sleep in.  A fucking epic, break-breaking lie in.  I didn’t even realise I was that tired.

Secondly, I spent a day out of my hermit-crab shell.  I forced myself to honour a date planned a couple of weeks ago.  Sunday afternoon movies with an old childhood friend (the Singing Teacher).  In the end, the movies were the crowning jewel to a great walk through the streets of the city; checking out the latest and greatest street art hidden in the nooks and crannies of the alleyways that make this city great.  I found some great new ideas for things to get me out of the house in the near future: one being an exposition on Photography and Time by the National Gallery of Victoria and another being Shakespeare’s “A Comedy of Errors” that is playing in town and screaming for a visit.

Then tonight, I helped a friend move his tiny number of boxes from one house to the next.  We went for a beer afterwards, his way of saying thanks.  The man is spastically (a word I use not for it’s meaning but for it’s strength outside the context of its meaning) good-looking.  His smooth manner, disarming French accent and friendly demeanor probably mean that he could talk to anyone and make them feel relaxed.  Our conversation helped my mojo find its way to that crystal meth injector tucked away somewhere near my hypothalymus and gave me a jolted reminder of what it feels like to be king of the world. To be top of the town, confident in most things I say, who I am and what I do. It made me feel a little bit more normal again.

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Image: Los Cardinalos/flickr

The Sad Kind of Fork in the Road

I read a beautiful piece by  a friend the other day. It reminded me she’s going through a rough time but is really a shining star.

She’s suddenly realising that her career path may not have been the right one.

It makes me sad that she feels this way for two reasons.  The first being that she is not as happy as she was when she first chose it.  The second being that she is such a good teacher.  At least I thinkk she would be a great teacher which I admit is not the same thing.

Education is already struggling with resourcing problems, it’s horrible to see another good one drop out of it.

Actually the most distressing thing was seeing the change. I don’t get to aee this friend regularly and it was in a period of 6 months that the transformation occurred. I saw her in November; full of life and bubbling with ideas for helping her problem children.  At the same coffee shop in June I could have been sitting with an entirely different person. Angry and inconsolable at children who don’t want to learn, at the parents failing them and the lack of support from senior members of staff.

I want to chastise her, I begin telling her that she has to take the good with the bad but realise that she’s already heard it. I can only listen.

So that’s what I’m going to do.

Today I…

Today I started a conversation with a stranger on the light rail.  It wasn’t his fault.

Well it was.  I am currently reading an amazing book for the second time.  Probably the best I have ever read, and I know that’s a very big call to make, but I don’t read that widely so it is not hard to top me.

However imagine my surprise when I see a slightly twitchy man wearing glasses and headphones reading the same!  Catch-22.  To randomly start talking to him would be a little kooky, but the guy (at least if he is enjoying the book) must be a kooky type of person. At least in some regard.  Catch-22.

Catch-22 Front Page Image

It’s been quite some time since I talked to a random stranger.  Today something just prompted me to go for it.

What did you do today?